Feed The Birds

After rescuing the cute Woodpecker earlier this Spring, I noticed during a shopping trip to an Odds & Ends Store Bird Suet and Woodpecker Suet Treats. Well, that got me started and I bought two to bring home and put out for my ever-growing list of birds.

When we first moved in here I had started to feed the birds, until they began cleaning off our fruit trees. Then I thought they could fend for themselves, as they appeared to be doing very well indeed!

But now, we are no longer working the trees and well, the poor things might go hungry! (Not!) So out my Shepherds Staff Poles, and onto them, the suet treats.

20190615_174455Not the best picture, but that is Woddy hanging on to taste the suet treat! I blame the lack of clarity on the window screen!

At first, not one bird noticed them, but by late afternoon we had quite a few. At dusk, I will need to bring them in for the night so Mrs. Bear does not stop by, and then return them in the morning. I am so into this art of nature. I wish I could say the same for Jack, but he could really care less.

Ah well, I am doing this for me. Well, for me and the birds.

Happy Sunday!

More Wildlife

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck
if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
A woodchuck would, chuck all the wood he could
if a woodchuck could chuck wood!

Tuesday afternoon I was walking into our family room when I noticed something outside the front window. At first, it was almost flat against the ground, and I was fairly sure it was some sort of critter, but I was not sure.

I grabbed my camera with the telephoto lens and when I got back to the window this little guy had stood up, nice and tall and was giving me quite a shot!

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I thought he was rather cute as he sat there. You can see his big fat belly and little hands (paws) and the ring of white fur around his snout! Isn’t he cute!

The Woodchuck, or Groundhog, is a common rodent with short, powerful legs and a medium-long, bushy, and somewhat flattened tail. The long, coarse fur of the back is a grizzled grayish brown with a yellowish or reddish cast. Woodchucks weigh least in spring when they are just out of hibernation and most in fall prior to hibernation. When alarmed or suddenly disturbed, they can give a loud, shrill whistle.

Size: Total length: 16–27 inches; tail length: 4–7 inches; weight: 4–14 pounds.

The best Groundhog movie was made with Bill Murray! It was called Groundhog Day”. Now I like this movie and I admit I have seen it more than once. It appeals to the romantic in me, as well as being a hilarious gem.

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So imagine my surprise to learn that I had this handsome STAR (creature/critter/rodent) in my front yard. I was amazed! This seems to be the year of the wild animals for me. It seems almost every day I find some new wild animal has come to see me. Best of all they pose!

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Now here is my next question for my little Groundhog friend…”What’s our winter going to be like and will we have an early Spring?

I know that Groundhog Day is in February, but hey, if this little sucker is living in my sidehill, eating my grass and various other pieces of vegetation, don’t you think he could cough up an answer before February?

The Beauty of Nature

The beauty of nature seems to surround us right now. Because of an unusual amount of rain, our trees, fields, and shrubs are all deep green. The flowers are blooming, and if the wind is blowing just right, the smell of the flowers in my neighborhood permeates the air!

Add to that the three families of Deer that we have in our small neighborhood and I feel as though I have found my little piece of Heaven on Earth!

We have a lone Doe. Now I think she looks pretty heavy, but it would be pretty late in the season for her to have a fawn. It’s not unheard of, but…

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We have our Doe with her twins, and they seem to provide most of the enjoyment in the neighborhood. They visit our neighbors close by and a friend just down the road, spotted them in his backyard. Fortunately, they are staying away from the busier roads.

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Our third Doe has a single Fawn. This Fawn is slightly older than the twins, and she and her Mama are also friendly.

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So, Here we are living in Deer Central and quite happily so. Our neighbors all feel the same way. Somehow these deer have brought so much delight and happiness to the people in my area.

Now I need to also mention the Bears that seem to be driving one of my neighbors crazy. They somehow keep trying to get into their trash. And they keep coming back.

I was driving home at dusk the other day, and a groundhog scurried across our driveway. He was a pretty fat fellow. I intend to look him up on Ground Hog Day for a reading on Springtime!

The Birds continue to fly about. I particularly enjoy our Cardinals. We have a pair that have lived here for some time. I am always thrilled to see them in our Pine Trees.

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I look forward to each day to see who is near us and what they are doing. Life in the wilderness is truly an amazing thing.

Doe, A Deer!

I’ve always liked animals. In fact when I was born my parents had both a Siamese Cat and a Golden Retriever. So all of my life, I have been surrounded by animals.

I’ve loved Zoos, and wild Animal Parks and whenever a creature (aside from Skunks and Porcupines) crosses my path, I enjoy the experience. I recall watching an Otter play on a lake in our State and that was so sweet.

In the early mornings during the summer, I throw open the windows so I can listen to the mournful cries of the Loons on our Lake. Think Katherine Hepburn in on Golden Pond, and you can image me outside as the dawn breaks, calling to them.

So, imagine how wonderful it was almost a month ago when I met our doe in the field one night. She was heavily pregnant, but something else stuck with me. She was quiet, undisturbed by me and almost welcomed my presence.

I have not fed her, or even tried to make direct contact with her. No, I am happy just to watch her graze in the field. She will eat and eat and then pick her head up and look straight at me. She is a beauty!

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The twin fawns came next and we reveled in their arrival. Watching them jump around their Mom like puppies brings joy to me.

Today when we were driving in from grocery shopping, Mama Doe was feeding the Twins and I was thrilled to see how healthy all three of them are. Apparently, our field is providing the nutrition that they all need. And, of course, Mama Doe is still nursing the babies.

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This has been one of the most wonderful experiences I have had. A birds-eye view of nature and the circle of life right here in my yard. I will be posting “No Hunting” signs on our property this fall. These beautiful creatures are so tame that there would be no sport in this. Also, we are in a neighborhood where each house is only an acre apart. Not good for hunting anyway.

 

A Cat & Mouse Story

Ok, I admit it. I do not like mice! So last night, when I opened the door to let the cat in out of the rain, you can imagine my horror when Bear came running in to the house carrying a mouse! He then preceded to drop it, I am guessing to play with it, alive and kicking,  and as I stood there, momentarily frozen, I  started to scream!

It was not a pretty scream. In fact I sounded quite shrill. I glanced over at my two grandchildren sitting together on the sofa, and both were laughing like crazy! Apparently they found Oma’s screaming at a mouse really funny!

Now, I will admit, my fear of mice is great and I was terrified!

The cat followed the mouse into the kids playroom and I tried to steel myself and go in and catch that thing. I even called Jack to ask what to do! Simple, he said, close the door and leave the cat inside with the mouse.

Simple  he says, but that still meant dealing with a decapitated creature in the end.

I paced back and forth, until Bear meowed at the door to get out. Then I slowly opened the door and peeked inside. Sure enough, there it lay. Gone to another world.

After I disposed of the body,  I came back in the house, and sat down with the kids. My heart was still racing!

I settled Quinn and came back down to Savi. I looked at her and told her I needed a hug! She smiled and threw her arms around me!

All I can say is, I am so glad it’s over!

And yes, I know I am a chicken!

Oh yes, I don’t like snakes either!

My Cooper’s Hawk

On Sunday morning I was sitting here in my chair, with the last of the Olympics on, and my computer on my lap. You know, the usual killing time stuff, often done on the weekend!

Suddenly, I her a very loud thud behind me. I was fairly certain that a bird had flown into my window, as often happens, and was either dazed on the ground or dead from a broken neck.

I jumped up, and ran into my bedroom and pulling up the front shade saw one of the largest birds I have seen this close in many years.

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I rushed the dogs from the room, grabbed my camera, and went back in to take as may pictures as I could, but also to determine if he was injured and would require me to call the Fish & Game Department.

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He looked dazed, but I could not see any breaks in his wings, or legs. His eyes looked confused, and he sat there, taking stock of the situation.

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Hubby came in and looked the bird over, and we knew right away that it was a Hawk, but what kind we could not be sure.

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When I was a little girl we rescued a Red Tail Hawk with a broken wing. We rehabilitated it, until our neighbor called Fish & Game and we had to surrender the bird. That was a heart breaking day for me, because I loved that Hawk.

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So, I knew it wasn’t like that Hawk, and after conferring with y friends we decided that it was a Cooper’s Hawk. Fairly common in the northern parts of America and Canada.

Then, my Hawk, shook his head, and flapped his wings, and in a moment, he was gone. I watched him as he flew away. His wing span so long and graceful.

He soared and so did my heart!